From Acura press: Acura's flagship, the new RL sedan, again proves that refined luxury need not be replete of performance adrenaline. The new 2009 Acura RL combines added performance, improved technology, more aggressive styling and safety features to Acura's premier sedan that was already top tier amongst luxury performance sedans. It would be hard to find a production car at any price that offers more advanced electronic technology or drive system sophistication.
Now, the new 2009 RL allows the driver to be even more connected to the world-through improved connection with the road along with improved electronic connectivity to the world around them.
The previous RL offered an abundance of consumer friendly technology for the driver and passengers including satellite-linked Acura Navigation System with Voice Recognition™, AcuraLink® Real-time traffic information, Bluetooth® HandsFreeLink® cellular phone connectivity, DVD-Audio stereo entertainment, Active Noise Cancellation, and GPS-linked solar-sensing automatic climate control. The 2009 RL furthers cutting edge technology with the addition of new high-tech items including AcuraLink® weather, a new Note function for XM® Radio, Traffic Rerouting™, Active Sound Control, Smart Entry, Bluetooth® Audio and HandsFreeLink® that now features over 700 voice commands along with substantially improved voice recognition.
Technology abounds in the drivetrain in the form of improved Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™, a revised steering rack system, upgraded coil springs, better performing shock absorbers, larger rear stabilizer bar, and more aggressive wheels and tires. Performance improves with the RL thanks to a new 3.7-liter V-6 engine that incorporates the first ever SOHC use of VTEC® valvetrain actuation for both the intake and exhaust valves.
The 2009 RL features an all-new powertrain consisting of a 3.7-liter SOHC VTEC® V-6 engine. Replacing the previous 3.5L V-6, the new 3.7L delivers more power, increased torque, more refined valvetrain, and an overall package that is lighter than the V-6 it replaces. The crankshaft of the RL is positioned transversely (side to side) rather than longitudinally (front to rear) which allows the RL engine to be packaged more tightly for better handling agility, without sacrificing interior comfort. Rated at 300 horsepower, the new high-output 3.7L V-6 is as powerful as some V-8 engines, yet the V-6 is more lightweight for better acceleration and more nimble handling. Compared to the old 3.5L V-6, the new 3.7L offers 9-percent more torque between idle and 3,000 rpm- the rpm range most people operate the engine during normal daily driving.
The 3.7L V-6 gets a new engine bay cover assembly that simplifies the under hood appearance as well as focuses more attention on the new engine.
The 3.7L V-6 is teamed with a new Sequential SportShift 5-speed automatic transmission with revised shift parameters, a more robust torque converter, and two new forms of transmission gear activation. The previous RL's multi-gated shifter has been replaced with a new straight-gate style console-mounted shifter. Or, for more spirited driving, a new "smart" F1-style steering wheel paddle shifter system is standard that now works when the transmission is in Drive (formerly the paddles only operated when in Manual mode). Grade Logic Control is paired with revised transmission shift programming to deliver improved performance and a crisper driving feel.
To deliver exceptional handling performance and to maximize all-season traction, the 2009 RL comes standard with revised Super Handling All-Wheel Drive™ (SH-AWD™) that incorporates new control parameters that deliver quicker, more precise all-wheel-drive response. SH-AWD™ is the first all-wheel drive system in the world to distribute the optimum amount of torque not only between the front and rear wheels, but also between the left and right rear wheels. The system's torque vectoring direct yaw control feature makes the cornering character of the RL exceptionally neutral when under power. The result is a safer, more predictable, more enjoyable driving experience.